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2011
Thomas3.20.2010

"Too Late!" -NOT SO!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 30, 2011

It is never too late to be what you might have  been.George Eliot  English
Novelist

 

Perhaps you've  heard of the "damage is done" scenario. An elderly family member started smoking as a young person, maybe a teenager, tucking a pack of cigarettes into his rolled-up shirtsleeve or into her purse. Decades later, despite wall-to-wall anti-smoking ads, despite smoking being outlawed in nearly every public space, perhaps despite family pleas or doctors' admonitions or even a heart attack, that person remains a smoker.


What's the point of stopping now, he or she figures, when my body has already suffered the consequences of a lifetime of tobacco addiction? The damage is done, isn't it?

So while the rate of smoking in those over age 65 is smaller " a bit over 8 percent " than it is in the younger population, more than 22 percent of whom smoke, older smokers are much less likely to try to stop. More than half of smokers ages 18 to 24 have tried to quit, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported, but only about a quarter of those over age 65 have. In the three decades following the first report by the surgeon general's report on smoking and health in 1964, smoking rates dropped much more among younger adults than among older ones.

"They've been smoking longer, so they might be more nicotine-dependent," said Bethea Kleykamp, a postdoctoral fellow in nicotine pharmacology at the National Institutes of Health, trying to explain those differences.
But older smokers may also be embracing the idea that the damage is done, Dr. Kleykamp added. They think, "Eh, I've lived this long. It's really not so bad. Why quit now? Let me enjoy my last years." Sometimes, she said, their doctors concur.

But in their article, The Older Smoker,recently published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, Dr. Kleykamp and Stephen Heishman, a nicotine researcher at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, argue that the damage isn't done.

Even at older ages, she told me in an interview, people who wean themselves from cigarettes can feel better, possibly improving enough to stop taking certain medications, and may even ward off cognitive decline. In short, they may have better and possibly longer lives. Even a month without cigarettes can significantly lower blood pressure, for example.

"If you're open to quitting, regardless of how old you are, it's one of the best things you can do for your health," she said.

Conversely, though all of us are prone to binary thinking about old age " we're fine or we're outta here, as if we have on-off switches" continuing to smoke can make seniors' final years much worse, exacerbating a long list of chronic diseases. Smokers who enter hospitals will endure withdrawal along with other unpleasantness, and nicotine patches aren't necessarily comfortable substitutes. Smokers have higher rates of hospital delirium, Dr. Kleykamp pointed out, and they heal more slowly after surgery.
As for smoking's effect on the aging brain, still a topic of debate, an Australian study (a small one, it should be said) published this spring used standard cognitive tests and brain scans to detect differences among three groups: older adults who'd never smoked, those who'd enrolled in stop-smoking programs and successfully quit, and those who tried to quit but didn't succeed. After two years, the quitters showed cognitive decline similar that of those who'd never smoked; the ongoing smokers showed greater decline than either. So the damage apparently wasn't all done ” it continued.

The good news for older smokers is that under the Affordable Care Act, Medicare now covers smoking-cessation counseling for any beneficiary who wants to stop. A quarter of older smokers have already made an attempt. (Previously, Medicare covered such programs only for those who already had a smoking-related disease.)

And Part D drug plans cover medications ” patches, gum, pills ” in most states. "We know that the best treatment is a combination of pharmacology and counseling," Dr. Kleykamp said. You'd think that reducing smoking among the elderly population would save Medicare a boatload of money.

 

  

The not-so-good news, though, is that doctors and researchers know very little about tobacco's biological effects on older people and therefore about which treatment methods are most likely to work in this particular population. In tobacco research, as in clinical trials generally, older adults are underrepresented. In a review of 15 rigorous studies on withdrawal symptoms, for example, participants' average age was 38. That won't help much.

  

So Dr. Kleykamp is calling for more age-specific research on what tobacco does to older bodies and on how to turn older smokers into older ex-smokers. "We have a lot of friends and family living very long lives, and whether we like it or not, they've held on to some addictive behaviors," she said. "They may need or want to stop, and we need more information about how to help them."

  
     

Keep your dreams alive. Understand to achieve anything requires faith and belief in yourself, vision, hard work, determination, and dedication. Remember all things are possible for those who believe. - Gail Devers

 

O.K. So you've "tried" to quit several times and you "always" made it so many hours or so many days and then.... failure! So you convinced yourself that you will probably die a Smoker! Well, you might! But only if you DECIDE to! You certainly don't "have to!" So put that thought behind you! It comes from your addictive mind ( often referred to here as the NicoDemon!) Your Addictive Mind is part of YOU and knows you intimately! LOL! But what it doesn't know is that you CAN change! You CAN LIVE ADDICTION FREE!!!

 

But you can't just do what you've done before and expect different results! So ask yourself, seriously, what are you going to do differently! One of the main things I did was to admit that I need help! So I came here and read what the folks here were saying! I listened to the people who had established a good solid quit! They told me to read about Nicotine Addiction so I READ! They told me to talk about my quit, don't keep it a secret! SO I TOLD EVERYBODY - EVEN STRANGERS! They told me to take it one day at a time - SO I PLEDGED on a daily basis I, Thomas, promise myself that NO MATTER WHAT I will not smoke for this day! Just for today I will LIVE Smoke FREE! If something comes up that I have to face I won't ask "Can I smoke, now?" I'll ask, "What can I do instead?" But I will not smoke even one little puff! I will RESPECT myself enough to HONOR my DECISION for the next 24 hours under ALL CIRCUMSTANCES!If I need help thinking with my determined Quitter's mind then I'll come here and BLOG before I blow my Quit but I won't give up or give in!

 

Today I CELEBRATE 619 Smoke FREE Days! It was no "easier" for me than for you! I have had many challenges, especially at first! But I NEVER GIVE UP! I Believe in ME! I work hard at my Quit! And that means giving myself permission to make ME my First Priority at all times! I can't do anything for anybody if I can't take care of ME FIRST!LOVE YOURSELF! You deserve to LIVE Smoke FREE!

imageAs a new anti-smoking campaign plays on the conscience of parents, The Star gathers some stark facts from health experts on the plight of smokers’ children

 

In a simple yet heart-rending plea, a little girl tells her mother why she wants her to stop smoking.

Mollie, 10, hesitates as she voices her fears about her mum dying from lung cancer just like her grandma did, and explains: “I don’t know what I would do without you.”

It’s not just Mollie’s mum who hears her touching words, but millions of television viewers throughout the country.

Mollie and a handful of other children are the real-life stars of a new Department of Health Smokefree advertising campaign designed to persuade smoking parents to quit by using their weak spot – their children. And the good news is that Mollie’s mum has now given up smoking.

 

The second wave of the Smokefree advertising campaign was launched alongside new research from the Department of Health which found that more than half (54%) of children with a parent who smokes say their one wish for Christmas is that their mum or dad gives up.

Almost all (98%) of the children with a smoking parent said they wished they’d quit – and 37% said they’d go without any Christmas presents if their parents kicked the habit.

Public health minister Anne Milton says: “What’s clear from the research is that children really want their parents to give up smoking.

“It’s not easy to give up, but we hope the campaign will give people that extra bit of encouragement they need to quit.”

 

Although children’s anti-smoking thoughts are compelling, is using them to prick their parents’ conscience really the best way of motivating them to kick the habit?

Certainly, after the first part of the Smokefree campaign ran in autumn 2009, research suggested that up to 500,000 smokers made an attempt to quit.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of Action on Smoking & Health (ASH), says: “Evidence shows that smokers need to be motivated to quit and need advice on how to do it. This campaign does both.

“Parents want to do their best for their children, while it may be hard to do something just for themselves.”

 

Indeed, NHS Smokefree ambassador and Birds Of A Feather actress Linda Robson says her children were the reason she stopped smoking.

Robson, whose father died from lung cancer at 57, says: “There’s no way I wanted to put my own children through that experience. The thought of my kids visiting me in hospital was a strong motivation for me, and since I decided to quit my three kids have been a huge support.

“There are times now when I still want to reach for a cigarette, but for my own health and for the benefit of my family I’m committed to staying smokefree.”

ASH says that about half of all smokers make at least one attempt to quit in a given year. However, only 2-3% successfully stop smoking long-term, according to a 2006 study funded by Cancer Research UK.

But Arnott points out that people who use NHS Stop Smoking Services, which offer support, counselling and access to anti-smoking medicines like varenicline, or nicotine gum and patches, have a 16% quitting success rate.

She stresses: “That’s a dramatic increase – getting help is invaluable.”

She also urges smokers to get a free NHS Quit Kit, which contains practical tools such as a quitting planner and MP3 downloads to help reduce cravings, and information about local Stop Smoking Services.

 

Arnott says that while people sometimes try hypnosis and acupuncture in an attempt to stop smoking, “none of those things have been shown to be any more successful than just stopping without help, and they can be quite expensive”.

There’s also the motivational factors of how much money can be saved, how fertility can be improved, and that quitting smoking can help improve the way you look and smell.

Arnott adds: “Some people do, of course, quit on their own, but if you’re having trouble, go and get help because then you’re much more likely to succeed.”

As well as the health and financial benefits for the successful quitter, there are also major benefits for the rest of the family – including children being less likely to smoke themselves when they grow up.

A study earlier this year by Professor John Britton, director of the UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies, and colleagues showed that if both parents smoke, children are around three times more likely to grow up to be smokers themselves than the children of non-smokers.

In addition, a Royal College of Physicians report last year estimated that passive smoking in children accounted for more than 20,000 cases of lower respiratory tract infection, 200 cases of bacterial meningitis and 40 sudden infant deaths every year.

“The risks are appalling,” stresses Arnott. “Half of smokers die of smoking-related diseases – and they’re really horrible diseases. It’s a terrible way to die.”

Professor John Britton, chairman of the Royal College of Physicians’ Tobacco Advisory Group, says many different approaches are needed to quit smoking, and using children in the anti-smoking war is one of many valid methods. “Lots of smokers want to stop smoking, and most need some sort of trigger to make them try,” he says.

 

“For every smoker, it’s a slightly different trigger, and the new Smokefree campaign will hit some of them. If one doesn’t work, you try another.”

He says other methods include concentrating on the health impact to individuals, tragic personal testimonies from people who’ve become ill through smoking, the impact of smoking on others, and the effects stopping can have.

“All of these different approaches offer something for some smokers. Giving up smoking has been likened to getting stuck in a busy nightclub when a fire breaks out – you need as many exits as possible.”

Among the many Blessings I'm counting is the fact that I live in This Great Country! As a U.S. Citizen I have so many privileges that folks around the world can't even imagine! Thus, I Thank with an EXtra Special gratitude those service men and women both past and present who helped make this FREEDOM possible! Tomorrow many will be serving their Country far away from their loved ones, while I am sitting at Thanksgiving Feast with mine! Thank You for your sacrifice! You are not forgotten! Much LOVE - Stay Safe! Happy Thanksgiving!

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was,  "thank you," that
would suffice. - Meister Eckhart

These are some of the Gifts that come to mind as I CELEBRATE my QUIT:

(1) I feel more SELF-CONFIDENT because I made a choice to change my self-destructive behavior and followed through.

(2) I feel more HONEST because I am not evading truthfulness about the consequences in order to support my Smoking Addiction.

(3) I feel more SELF-RESPECT because I made a decision to QUIT SMOKING and honored that decision.

(4) I feel more SECURE because I no longer have that constant battle "I want to smoke"vs"I don't want to smoke."

(5) I feel more OPTIMISTIC because I no longer attack stress with another cigarette, I attack it with a constructive plan of action.

(6) I feel more SPIRITUAL because when I called upon my higher power for assistance I felt his/her response.

(7) I feel more DECISIVE because I saw how I can set a goal and accomplish it one day at a time each and every day.

(8) I feel more SELF-AWARE because I sense days or situations of weakness and have a winning back up plan to protect my QUIT.

(9) I feel more INTEGRATED because when my body said "I need...." my mind and spirit responded affirmatively.

(10) I feel more JOY as I experience COLLATERAL KINDNESS and CELEBRATE each and every daily VICTORY over my Smoking Addiction with my BecomeanEX Friends! THANK YOU for CELEBRATING with me!!

May you all have a very Blessed Thanksgiving and Count your Blessings! As my Dear Friend, JoJo saya, If you woke up breathing, CONGRATULATIONS! You have another chance! Breathe Easy and Breathe WELL!

Smoking increases the risk of serious health problems – heart disease, stroke, cancers (lung, mouth, stomach, pancreas, cervix, bladder, larynx and more), lung diseases (emphysema and chronic bronchitis), plus osteoporosis, stillbirth and other pregnancy and infant problems for women who smoke.

More deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than from human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, suicides, and murders combined – almost a half million people. Besides the lethal issues, smoking also causes other nuisance problems: chronic cough, shortness of breath, poor healing, erectile dysfunction (almost twice as frequent in smokers) and bad breath.

Smokers always smell like smoke to non-smokers. Since three out of four Americans do not smoke, you really stand out – literally, if you work in a nonsmoking job that requires you to leave the building to smoke. In fact, many employers will choose to hire only nonsmokers because smokers take more sick time and spend more on health care. Indoors, smoking increases maintenance costs.

Smoking is expensive. Over and above the health costs, smoking can cost around $1,700 (West Virginia) to $4,300 (New York) per year for a pack-a-day smoker. Imagine what you could do with that much extra money.

When you quit, your body starts to recover immediately. Your sense of smell and taste return, your lungs start to heal in weeks, your circulation improves within a couple months, and by one year, your heart disease risk is cut in half.

How to quit? Mark Twain noted, “Quitting is easy. I’ve done it a thousand times.” But we all know that anyone who smokes, chews tobacco or uses snuff regularly finds quitting to be very hard. Nicotine is powerfully addictive – as much as heroin or cocaine. In people genetically susceptible to nicotine addiction, some of the brain’s cells change from the first nicotine exposure to make nicotine more desirable. It results in increased levels of certain brain chemicals in the reward and pleasure areas. As the nicotine is metabolized, brain levels drop and the addicted person experiences physical and mental effects that only respond to more nicotine. Gradually, the nicotine-addicted person needs more nicotine to produce the desired effects.

The most important component to successfully quitting smoking is a strong desire to quit. Next, motivation to start on the road to being a nonsmoker is needed. That may be enough for some, but many people need extra help. There are nicotine replacement products and prescription drugs that can help. But the quit rate is higher with support.

The American Cancer Society has lots of information on its website and state and Federal governments provide help. Start here and call 1-800-QUIT-NOW for help or see your doctor.

Once you quit, you will need to have a plan to deal with the urges and the habit of having a smoke at all the usual times. Both websites listed discuss preparing for being smoke free.Maybe this is your year to quit for good.

The progressive disease, which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema, slowly damages airways, making it difficult to get air in and out of the lungs. Symptoms include regular coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing on exertion, fatigue and frequent, long-lasting colds.Early treatment is crucial to slow the progression of the disease and avoid life-threatening lung attacks.“Get tested. Get treated,” said Angela Shaw, a respiratory therapist at St. Mary’s.

She urges people with persistent shortness of breath and coughing to talk to their doctor about a simple test, called spirometry, to check on how well their lungs are working. 

Commonly people don’t seek help until they’ve already lost half their function.

“When the lungs are damaged, they’re permanently damaged,” Shaw said.

Numerous reasons delay a person getting help for a disease primarily caused by smoking.

“There are people out there who feel they brought this on themselves,” Shaw said.

However, she added, older people started smoking long before the health effects were known and nicotine is a difficult addiction to kick. Many people, deny there’s a problem out of fear or wrongly think it’s a normal part of aging.

“People start to adapt their lives as well,” Shaw said.

Significant improvement is possible if a person diligently manages the chronic disease with medication and exercise, said Suzy Young, a nurse practitioner in respirology. They also need to learn how to handle episodes of difficulty breathing and avoid lung infections.

“Making that change is key,” Young said.

Otherwise people end up at the hospital repeatedly, in serious distress and requiring emergency treatment to open their airways. COPD is a leading cause of readmission at St. Mary’s, the regional respiratory care centre.

“We see a lot of people over and over,” Young said.

http://www.therecord.com/news/local/article/625527--chronic-lung-disease-manageable-with-medication-exercise

Commit to quit this year. You can do it.

Thursday was Great American Smokeout Day, a a day specifically set aside to urge tobacco users to put down those cigarettes, cigars or pipes, or don't put a pinch between their cheeks and gums.

But any day can be a smokeout day and your first day toward kicking the smoking habit for good.

It's not so hard, if you consider the alternatives: Lung cancer, lip cancer, cancers of the mouth, throat and digestive tract.

The American Cancer Society has a list of benefits of ending smoking, including:

- A drop in carbon monoxide levels in the blood to normal in 12 hours.

- An increase in lung function within three months.

- A reduction in coughing and shortness of breath and a gain in the body's natural defenses against lung infections within nine months.

- In a year, the risk of coronary heart disease is dropped to half that of a smoker.

If the health statistics aren't enough, calculate the cost of your particular form of tobacco on your weekly, monthly and annual budget.

The cancer society has scheduled the smokeout for the third Thursday of November for decades, dating back to an event in California in 1974.

 

If cold turkey quitting is too much for you, consider the availability of counseling, nicotine replacement products, group support, telephone hotline support, guidebooks and encouragement, including nagging, from friends and family. Several local sessions are coming up in December.

It's about making a commitment. Trying to stay away from tobacco for a day is the first step on what is a quick road to a healthier lifestyle.

When you're breathing better, when your heart is functioning better, you can be more active, which puts you in better health overall, which leads to a change in mood.

To learn more about the solution to your tobacco problem, visitwww.cancer.org to learn about resources.

Also, through the Washington County Tobacco Prevention Program, people can access the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line and participate in free cessation classes. Classes are scheduled for 1 to 2 p.m. Dec. 7 at the Barlow Library and 4 to 6 p.m. Dec. 7 at Selby General Hospital in Marietta.

Please, for your own health, make a commitment to quit.

Thomas3.20.2010

One Husband's Story!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 19, 2011

Six years ago, I lost my wife, business partner and the stepmother of my twin sons to a smoker’s cancer. She was 49 years old.
Pam Klein never smoked in her life. But in her 25 years as a journalist, she spent countless hours in smoke-filled rooms. She was just doing her job, and it killed her.
The Great American Smokeout offers life- and health-saving benefits to smokers who quit. But all the smokers would have to snuff it out to safeguard workers exposed to second-hand smoke.
That’s not likely to happen, so cities, counties, states and nations throughout the world have protected employees by enacting laws that make workplaces smoke free. While our neighbors in Ohio, Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin have passed strong smoke-free workplace laws, Indiana has not. While Fort Wayne, Muncie, Bloomington and other Indiana communities have gone smoke-free, Indianapolis and Greenwood continue to have watered-down laws that leave many workers exposed.
Smoke-free workplace legislation inevitably sparks debate between health advocates and (most often) bar owners. The former say government has a right to intervene to safeguard workers. The latter say business owners should decide who’s exposed to what. But the risks are increasingly beyond debate.
In 2006, the Surgeon General of the United States issued a 700-page report on the dangers of second hand smoke. It found “massive and conclusive scientific evidence” of the “alarming” public health threat posed by secondhand smoke. It said smoking bans are the only way to protect non-smokers.
While many people rightfully associate lung cancer with smoking and secondhand smoke, that’s not the only problem. The Surgeon General’s report said, “Children exposed to secondhand smoke are at an increased risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), acute respiratory infections, ear problems and more severe asthma.”
In adults, “exposure to secondhand smoke has immediate adverse effects on the cardiovascular system and causes coronary heart disease and lung cancer.” Bottom line, said the Surgeon General, “There is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke.”
Some argue that separate smoking sections or special ventilation systems can clear the air of this deadly hazard. But the Surgeon General’s report says otherwise. “Separating smokers from nonsmokers, cleaning the air and ventilating buildings cannot eliminate exposures of nonsmokers to secondhand smoke,” said the report.
Instead, the only way to clear the air is to prohibit smoking where people work.
All over the nation and world, the communities we compete with for jobs, conventions and tourism are going smoke free. The longer we put that off, the more we’ll be at a disadvantage for quality and quantity of life, severity of health problems, cost of health care, cost of health insurance and more.
It’s too late for Pam. But there’s still time to protect the physical and fiscal health for all the other workers. Anyone who tells you otherwise is just blowing smoke.

ROCHESTER, MN -  The American Cancer Society says tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States. 

Now, a new study from Mayo Clinic has some startling numbers to back that up. And it brings attention to dangers of exposure to secondhand smoke.

"450,000 Americans every year die of tobacco-caused disease, and that's like three fully loaded 747s crashing everyday, 365 days a year, with no survivors," said Dr. Richard Hurt.

Dr. Hurt is the Director of the Nicotine Dependence Center at Mayo Clinic. He said that statistic shows how deadly smoking can be. And being around secondhand smoke isn't much better.

"If you're exposed to secondhand smoke at work or at home on a regular basis, that'd be like smoking 9 to 10 cigarettes per day," said Dr. Hurt.

In 2002, Olmsted county enforced a no smoking ban in all there bars and restaurants. In 2007, the county made all workplaces completely smoke free. That same year, Minnesota enforced a ban on smoking in all bars and restaurants across the state.

"It brings out more customers, more families are coming out to eat which is nice, more younger people," said David Mord.

Mord is the general manager of the Green Mill in Albert Lea. He said the smoking ban has not only brought in more business, but it has also created a healthier work environment.

"I come home and I smell good now. I like to smell the grease instead of smoke on me," Mord said.

And the positive impacts include a healthier lifestyle. A recent Mayo Clinic study looked at people in Olmsted County before and after the county banned smoking in the workplace.

"Our study showed that there was a 45 percent reduction in the incidence of heart attacks from 18 months before to 18 months after," Dr. Hurt said.

And he said the study found something even more startling.

"There was a reduction of 50 percent, 50 percent reduction in sudden cardiac death from 18 months before to 18 months after the smoke free workplace laws, and that's a really remarkable figure," said Dr. Hurt.

And he says these numbers aren't something to be taken lightly.

"If you're interested in not having a heart attack, if you're interested in not dropping dead, then being exposed to second hand smoke is something you should be concerned about," said Dr. Hurt.

Dr. Hurt said that while everyone should limit their exposure to second hand smoke, folks with known heart disease should have zero exposure.

Based on this study, Mayo Clinic is going to recommend that health care professionals consider second hand smoke as another risk factor for heart disease.

Thomas3.20.2010

Boy, oh boy!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 18, 2011

Where is the Pipster when you need her?

WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama, pronounced tobacco-free in his latest medical checkup, has tough words for cigarette makers.

Some tobacco companies, he says in a White House web video, are fighting new cigarette warning labels because "they don't want to be honest about the consequences."

The video observed Thursday's 36th "Great American Smokeout" by the American Cancer Society. Obama says the country has made progress in reducing the number of Americans who smoke but notes 46 million are still addicted.

"The fact is, quitting smoking is hard," he says. "Believe me, I know."

In 2009, Obama signed legislation to help keep young people from lighting up. In June, the Food and Drug Administration approved powerfully graphic new warning labels that companies would have to place on the top half of cigarette packs.


 

 

                                                  

The Great American Smokeout 

Today, Americans from across the country are making plans to quit smoking as part of the American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout. President Obama and his Administration are committed to doing everything possible to stop kids from smoking and reduce the number of Americans who smoke.

Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius will host a live chat about tobacco cessation and prevention today at 12:45 PM EST on HHS.gov/Live.

Watch President Obama's message to everyone taking part in the Great American Smokeout:

The Great American Smokeout

In Case You Missed It

Here are some of the top stories from the White House blog.

President Obama: Congratulations to Everyone Taking Part in Today's Great American Smokeout
There are resources available to help the 46 million Americans who are hooked on tobacco put down cigarettes for good.

Ambassador Kirk Updates the President's Export Council on 2011 Trade Updates and Initiatives
The President's Export Council met to discuss ways to reach the President's goal of doubling our nation's exports by the end of 2014.

From the Archives: President Obama Visits the Great Buddha
A look back at President Obama's visit to the Great Buddha of Kamakura on his Asia trip last year. 

Is there any benefit from tobacco products?

I think not - I have seen the terrible consequences from tobacco use throughout my 20 years practicing internal medicine, and just last September watched my own father suffer and die from these consequences.

Tobacco use - in cigarette form or chewing tobacco - results in preventable chronic illness, suffering and early death, as well as thousands of dollars spent for medical care that, in most cases, could have been avoided.

The risks from tobacco use include emphysema, lung cancer, vascular disease, heart attack, stroke, dementia, and bladder, colon and mouth cancers.

If you develop emphysema (also known as COPD) you probably will live for a number of years after the diagnosis, but these will not be quality years. During this time, shortness of breath worsens to the point where just walking to the bathroom makes you fatigued. Eventually the lungs give out, infections set in and the individual dies of respiratory failure. Lung cancer, or any of the other diseases that develop as a result of tobacco use, may kill you faster than emphysema.

 

In addition to the medical and quality of life consequences of tobacco use, let's not forget about the financial complications. It is a fact that smokers use more health care resources and health care dollars. Bills for visits to the doctor, hospitalizations, medications and surgeries add up. All of this places a significant burden on the individual, his or her family, the health care system and society.

So, with all the problems that tobacco use creates, why does our society not outlaw the use of any and all tobacco products? If we really want health care reform and want to have a healthier community and country, why not start with the obvious. Let's not create products that harm and kill almost everyone who lights up or chews this poison. And if these products are still produced despite all the above, let's be smart enough to choose health and life over disease and death.

I applaud the leaders at Lee Memorial Health System and NCH Healthcare System for making their facilities smoke-free. Those of us who work in the health care field need to be role models and teach others how to stay healthy by avoiding harmful and unhealthy behaviors.

We only get one life, so let's protect it, cherish it and give it good nutrition and exercise to make us strong and vital. Also, let's make our health and the health of our businesses and community a priority. No one can protect your life as well as you can, so remember you're worth it. Always do your best at staying healthy.

Stay well!

GREEN BAY, Wis. - Every year, $193 billion goes up in smoke in health-care expenditures and productivity losses because of cigarette smoking, according to the American Cancer Society

Thursday is the 36th annual Great American Smokeout, and Laurie Pagel, public relations manager for the American Cancer Society in Wisconsin, says the annual observance is working.

"We are actually seeing that lung cancer death rates have decreased by about 14 percent from 1991 to 2007. But we know that tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States."

About 15 percent of all deaths in Wisconsin each year are attributable to smoking, and 46 million Americans still are smokers, despite the deadly statistics.

"Tobacco use is responsible for nearly one in five deaths overall in the United States. And we know that one third of cancer deaths could be prevented if people avoided tobacco products."

In addition to the toll-free phone number and website, Pagel says, the American Cancer Society has a presence on popular social media including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

"We actually invite people to join our American Cancer Society experts on Facebook on Nov. 17 for a live chat and to help them get answers to all of their quit-smoking questions."

Wisconsin can expect an estimated 4,000 new lung cancer cases and nearly 3,000 deaths from the disease this year. Pagel says smokers who quit can add up to eight years to their lives.

The American Cancer Society has plenty of resources to help people quit smoking and stay well. Free phone coaching is available at 1-800-227-2345, and tips and tools are online at cancer.org/smokeout.

The pharmaceutical industry has a clear commercial interest in undermining smokers’ confidence in their ability to quit “cold turkey”.Some two decades of such promotion notwithstanding, the reality of smoking cessation is that between two-thirds and three-quarters of former smokers quit without using NRT or other drugs or attending any sort of smoking cessation service. As few as 1% to 7% even call a quitline.This situation has come to pass largely due the pharmaceutical industry’s aggressive promotion of its cessation treatments, often based on work by teams of researchers and consultants who report more favorable results than researchers not funded by industry.

Belief that smokers are unable to quit without using varenicline(Chantix), nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), buproprion (Wellbutrin) or some other form pharmacotherapy has become so entrenched that a 2010 article reporting that the great majority of ex-smokers had quit without recourse to assistance and suggesting smokers be made aware of this fact, was roundly criticised in peer-reviewed journals and on the leading international tobacco-control online forum.Criticism of the article was largely based on a clinical perspective of smoking cessation that’s preoccupied with rates of quitting associated with a particular treatment, as opposed to those who take a population-level perspective focusing on getting the greatest number of smokers to quit.

Not only do most smokers successfully quit by other methods, there is growing evidence that one such medication does more harm than good.Varenicline is a prescription-only treatment that works by binding to nicotinic receptors, providing some stimulation at the receptor but also blocking nicotine.The process may reduce withdrawal symptoms and nicotine cravings. Success rates among participants in varenicline clinical trials are reported to be around 22% continued abstinence after 12 months.

 

But clinical trials differ considerably from “real world” settings.Trials for varenicline enrolled healthy people:

 

with no pre-existing medical or psychiatric conditions;

 

who were motivated to quit;

 

with moderate levels of nicotine dependence, and;

 

who were also provided with regular cessation advice and support.

 

Smokers across the general population have a considerably less salubrious profile, and there are also substantial differences in motivation between trial participants and the broader community.Roughly half of participants stopped treatment within four weeks.

One potential explanation for the community drop-off rate is the range of associated side effects. Nausea, in up to one-third of those taking varenicline, insomnia, abnormal dreams, headache and constipation are commonly reported adverse effects.By May 2010, the TGA had received 1025 reports of suspected adverse reaction, 67% (691) related to psychiatric symptoms including “depression, agitation, anxiety, altered mood and aggression” and reports of “206 suicide-related events among people taking varenicline, including 15 completed suicides".Since 2009, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has required that varenicline packaging display “boxed” warnings, the strongest of all FDA warnings, about a possible link between the drug and the onset of neuropsychiatric adverse effects.Despite such seemingly obvious concerns, varenicline is championed by many in a smoking cessation community increasingly committed to pharmaceutical approaches to quitting.

Before I am bombasted with criticism for opening this can of worms, I am not totally against NRTS or pharmaceutical interventions! If you are taking them under a Doctor's supervision and using them to successfully quit smoking - HOORAY!!!! The more EXers the better!!!! But if you choose to go cold turkey, you should know that you are not alone, and despite the propaganda in favor of pharmaceutical intervention, you CAN do this! Being highly motivated and getting regular advice and support (like coming here DAILY!) may be sufficient to create a SUCCESSFUL QUIT! Whatever it takes to be a 6%er!!!!!!

When you are around a person who is smoking, you inhale the same dangerous chemicals as he or she does.  Breathing secondhand smoke can make you sick.  Some of the diseases that secondhand smoke causes can kill you.

 Protect yourself: do not breathe secondhand smoke.  But completely avoiding secondhand smoke is very hard to do.  Most of us breathe it whether we know it or not.  You can breathe secondhand smoke in restaurants, around the doorways of buildings, and at work.  When someone smokes inside a home, everyone inside breathes secondhand smoke.  Some children even breathe secondhand smoke in day care.

 There is no safe amount of secondhand smoke.  Children, pregnant women, older people, and people with heart or breathing problems should be especially careful.  Even being around secondhand smoke for a short time can hurt your health.    

Thomas3.20.2010

Still Smoking????

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 14, 2011

According to the American Cancer Society, tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US, yet more than 46 million Americans still smoke. The ACS’s 36th Great American Smokeout, taking place this Thursday, is a national movement encouraging smokers to stop. 

“The battle has been won in awareness of the dangers,” says Dr. Thomas J. Glynn, M.A., M.S., Ph.D., the ACS’s director of cancer science, trends and international cancer control. “But most people think that’s only [with regards to] lung cancer. There’s more tobacco-caused heart disease than lung cancer. It also contributes to many other cancers, from esophageal to colorectal.”

And people still smoke, because tobacco's nicotine is powerfully addicting — though it's not as harmful when independent of cigarettes, which is why nicotine patches and gums are  used to quit smoking.

“[Nicotine] is unbelievably addictive,” says Glynn. “It’s not easy to quit. It takes the majority of people several attempts before they stop for good.”

Dr. Glynn’s cessation tips
    
Write down the reasons why you want to stop. Examine your motivation. Long-term quitters are motivated. If you slip, read them and remind yourself. 
    
Rally support from family, friends and co-workers. And use counseling or a quitting hotline, such as 1-800-QUIT-NOW, or the ACS’s 1-800-227-2345.
    
Use a substitute. Try to choose something healthy — munch on an apple rather than a candy bar. Most people put on five to eight pounds in weight when they quit smoking. That can be dealt with later.

Thomas3.20.2010

Tobacco-Flavored Lies!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 14, 2011

'Safety" might not be the first word to describe a tobacco product that threatens to turn children as young as 11 into nicotine fiends. But as The National reported last week, Chaini Khaini smokeless tobacco pouches are no ordinary product.

Logon to chainikhaini.com and the claims begin: "It is a medically proven fact that [Chaini Khaini] is much less harmful than smoking," the makers boast. "Safety, from the harm of smoking and chewing tobacco."

Claims such as these are purely deceptive, as the company proceeds to admit that any use of tobacco is "injurious to health". A more truthful depiction is seen in recent requirements forcing tobacco companies' advertising in the UAE and elsewhere to show rotting teeth, diseased lungs and other gruesome photos.

Chaini Khaini flavoured tobacco is an example of the underage tobacco use that is an obvious problem in society. Police say children are sucking down the tobacco "like sweets". And it is far too common to see teenagers smoking cigarettes as well.

Part of the answer is to educate, even scare, young people about real health effects. Tobacco companies and retailers have an obvious interest in marketing addictive products so regulations on advertisements and, more effectively, point-of-sale outlets need to be further enforced.

Thomas3.20.2010

Beating the Odds!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 12, 2011

"What's wrong with the occasional cigarette as long as your lungs don't look like down town L.A.? After all, a cigarette once in a while can't be all bad - it may be a vice but it's a legal vice and it doesn't hurt anybody - at least not like alcohol or drugs! besides nobody's perfect! Look, I just smoke a pack a week! Yea, I know about Cancer and such, but surely that's people who smoked 2 or 3 packs for 40 or 50 years not me! Heck, I was over 30 when I started smoking and I've quit now and then just to give my body a break, so I'll be O.K. Everything in moderation ain't all that bad! "

That was me talking 2 years ago, completely confident that I had successfully dodged the silver bullet by carefully playing the odds! I would be the last person on Earth to get sick from smoking-related illness! But guess what? I was wrong! Boy, was I ever wrong! Holy Smokes!!! ( pun intended)

When I woke up that beautiful Spring morning with a fever of 102 there is absolutely no way I would have predicted the path that my life was about to take! That trip to the Emergency Room (it would have to be on a Sunday!) changed my life forever! I, Thomas, was diagnosed not just with a lung infection but with Emphysema!!! The guy who was so careful to beat the odds just lost the game of poker and there's no going back! Emphysema is chronic, permanent, and progressive! Most likely, although only Our Creator knows for sure, it will be my cause of Death! How does a young (relatively) healthy (usually) active fella like me get Emphysema, for crying out loud?

What I didn't know was way more than what I did know about Emphysema and COPD!!! Oh, I'd seen the pictures of the happy retired folks puttering around in their gardens or playing with their grandkids because they were smart enough to take Advair or Spiriva! That's about it! My Grandma who lived in another State died of Emphysema when she was in her nineties but we all have to die of something, don't we? Eventually! But heck, I was 52 and had never really been sick much at all my entire adult life! I worked 60 to 80 hours a week and never thought anything of it - hard physical labor, not a desk job!

 

Here are some facts that I have since learned about COPD: it is an auto-immune illness. it doesn't care if you are 20 or 80 years old! It doesn't care if you smoke 2 or 3 cigs a day or 2 or 3 packs! Just one cigarette will trigger your body's defense mechanism and there you have it! About half of the folks who have COPD don't even know it! Meanwhile the damage that they are doing to their lungs can NEVER be repaired! Your body creates all kinds of mucus in your lungs and bronchials that is a perfect breeding ground for any kind of bacteria or virus you cross paths with like pneumonia! Every time you get a lung infection a bit more irreparable damage will have been done and your condition deteriorates. Because your lungs don't work so well you can inhale fairly well, but you can't exhale so well at all. What people exhale is Carbon Dioxide - you know, poison! That CO2 stays in your system and makes your whole body in a constant state of being poisoned! Because your body wants Oxygen and not CO2 your heart overworks itself trying to get enough Oxygen to where it's needed. Eventually, the heart deforms itself from working overtime! Then you have Congestive Heart Failure! Don't forget, you're still getting those lung infections from time to time! The toxins make your limbs feel like wet spaghetti so that such things as getting dressed or washing dishes become monumental tasks! When you cross a room you huff and puff like the Big Bad Wolf! And know you can't even blow out a candle - let alone blow down a house! This is my reality! Oh you remember that part about not hurting anybody but myself? What do you suppose my Family and Loved Ones are feeling knowing that I did this to myself?

Now, do you still want that occasional cigarette? You still think it won't happen to you? Do you know that people die of smoke related illnesses in their TEENS? Check out Brian's Story atwww.whyquit.com! Do you know that one single cigarette can not only trigger COPD it can cause a life-altering Stroke? Do you know that one single cigarette can change your DNA permanently setting you up for Cancer? ONE CIGARETTE! Do you believe it? I am testimonial that in this business you can't beat the Odds - the Odds can beat YOU - down! Forever! Get Smart! Be honest, at least with yourself! Smoking KILLS! Every time you light a cig you are committing the little suicide! You are spitting on the Gift of LIFE that your Creator bestowed on you! Enough is enough! Stop playing the Odds! TODAY is the Right Day to become Smoke FREE for LIFE!

 68.8 percent of current smokers say they want to quit and 52.4 percent tried to quit during the past year. In addition, 48.3 percent of smokers who saw their doctor in the past year say they got advice to quit. Moreover, 31.7 percent had counseling alone or with drugs to help them quit in the past year. And about 6 percent quit successfully in the past year.

 

Do you want to be in the 6%? LISTEN to the people in this Community! Do your reading:

whyquit.com

quitsmokingonline.com

The Easy Way by Allen Carr

Blog, Comment, make Friendships, join Groups, come here before you are in over your head!!!!

The folks who contribute a lot to this site SUCCEED! The people who don't take it seriously don't last! You will have plenty of time when you quit smoking - I spent 1 1/2 HOURS a day just smoking!!!! That's a lot of time!

TODAY is a Great Day to LIVE Smoke FREE!!!!

Spread the news! Here is a copy of the Drive4COPD Screener that anybody can take by answering 5 simple questions! You can download your own and give it to your boss! It will keep your insurance costs down and help your business save $$$$ in lost productivity and insurance costs as well!How much money? You'd be Amazed!

From an economic standpoint, the financial toll of COPD on U.S. companies is staggering. Experts estimate the cost of COPD in the U.S. to be in the tens of billions of dollars annually, with lost workdays accounting for $58 million. According to the American Lung Association, approximately 85 to 90 percent of COPD deaths are caused by smoking. Furthermore, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each smoking employee costs the employer $3,391 per year—$1,623 in excess medical expenditures, $1,760 in lost productivity, higher life insurance premiums and increased disability claims.

http://www.drive4copd.com/copd-screener/screener.aspx

 

Early detection of COPD will lead to a much better Quality and Quantity of LIFE! By the way, one of the questions is if you have smoked more 100 sickerettes! I smoked about 10 a day so that's, uh, 10 DAYS! Heck, I smoked for 20 Years - oblivious to this danger! Knowledge is POWER!

Nov. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Smokers could double or triple their chances of quitting by getting counseling, medicine or both, said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

About 69 percent of current smokers want to quit, and more than half have tried and failed within the last year, according to the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Only 32 percent of patients used counseling or medications in the last year to help with the quitting attempt, the agency said today in a statement.

An estimated 443,000 people die prematurely from smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke yearly in the U.S., and another 8.6 million live with a serious illness caused by tobacco use, according to the Atlanta-based CDC. It’s also been linked to lung, larynx, esophageal and oral cancers.

“We know that quitting can be challenging, but more than half of Americans who ever smoked have quit, and you can, too,” said Tim McAfee, director of the CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health, in a statement. “Quitting smoking is the best thing smokers can do for their health and the health of their families.”

About half of smokers who saw a doctor in the last year said they were advised to kick the habit. Advice from a health professional increases the likelihood that smokers will try to quit and increases the likelihood that smokers will use medication to try.

Did you know that tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US? Are you aware that each year smoking accounts for 443,000 premature deaths and 49,400 non-smokers die as a result of exposure to secondhand smoke?

It turns out that more than 70 percent of adult smokers say they want to quit, but without help, fewer than 5 percent succeed. Nearly everyone in your community has likely been touched by cancer in some way whether personally or through the experience of a family member, friend, or coworker. But everyone in your community also has the power to help prevent cancer.

According to the American Cancer Society nearly half of all cancer deaths could be prevented if people did what we know works: eat right, exercise, avoid tobacco, and get regular check-ups.

For those of you who are unaware, the month of November plays host to the Great American Smoke Out (GASO). This November, The American Cancer Society is marking its 36th Great American Smoke out on November 17th.

On this day the American Cancer Society along with Bryant’s Colleges Against Cancer will be encouraging smokers to use the date to make a plan to quit, or to plan in advance and quit smoking on that day. Ultimately the goal of doing so will be to help smokers take that important step towards a healthier life and reduced cancer risk.

At any point you can make a change so why not use GASO as your starting point. Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US, yet more than 46 million Americans still smoke. However, according to the American Cancer Society, more than half of these smokers have attempted to quit for at least one day in the past year.

The reality is that quitting smoking is hard, but you can increase your chances of success with help. The American Cancer Society website is a great resource that you can use to learn about the steps you can take to quit smoking. If you are not a smoker you can also learn about the resources and support that can increase your chances of helping a loved one or friend quit successfully.

Thomas3.20.2010

Preventing Asthma!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 10, 2011

CHICAGO, Nov. 9, 2011 -- /PRNewswire/ -- On November 17, millions of Americans will mark the American Cancer Society's 36th annual Great American Smokeout by giving up smoking for the day, and maybe for good. Because smoking can trigger asthma symptoms in children, quitting is an important first step toward protecting kids' health. BeSmartBeWell.com tells parents the steps they can take on the Great American Smokeout, and every day of the year, to lower the risk for childhood asthma.

To view the multimedia assets associated with this release, please click: http://multivu.prnewswire.com/mnr/childhoodasthma/50826/

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20111109/MM02598LOGO )

"Parents can work to prevent asthma by doing things in the home. First is to make sure nobody is smoking in the household," says Dr. Judith Palfrey, past president of the American Academy of Pediatrics and one of the experts featured on BeSmartBeWell.com.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, exposure to secondhand smoke can trigger asthma symptoms in children who previously did not have symptoms and worsen asthma symptoms in children who have asthma. Eliminating triggers like secondhand smoke is the key to managing childhood asthma and reducing the frequency and severity of asthma attacks. At BeSmartBeWell.com, parents can watch Trinity's story to see how her mom made their home more asthma-safe.

Dangerous exposure

About 7 million U.S. kids and teens have asthma – making it the most common chronic condition in children. When children breathe in allergens like cigarette smoke, their airways become irritated and then tighten. Children with asthma then begin to cough, wheeze and have difficulty breathing. Without treatment, asthma attacks can quickly turn serious and even deadly.



Read more: http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/09/4042728/butt-out-prevent-childhood-asthma.html#ixzz1dLt8clbw

 

According to the U.S. Surgeon General, almost 60 percent of U.S. children aged 3 to 11 years–almost 22 million kids–are exposed to secondhand smoke. Children's lungs are especially vulnerable to the effects of secondhand smoke because they breathe more rapidly than adults, taking in more secondhand smoke. More than 40 percent of children who go to the emergency room for asthma live with smokers.

Where can I learn more?

BeSmartBeWell.com/Childhood-Asthma is a website that provides practical information to help parents understand and manage this serious chronic condition. Produced by the country's largest customer-owned health insurer in collaboration with medical experts and national health organizations, BeSmartBeWell.com features:

 

      
  • Life stories of real kids and teens living with asthma
  •   
  • Practical videos with expert, medical advice
  •   
  • Reputable resources and links for more information
  •   
  • Latest childhood asthma health news
  •   
  • Health quizzes

 

At the site, visitors can also register for the monthly Spotlight Newsletter and News Alerts for in-depth articles and breaking news on childhood asthma and other health topics important to parents.



Read more: http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/09/4042728/butt-out-prevent-childhood-asthma.html#ixzz1dLtQcF8M

Thomas3.20.2010

100 X 6!!!!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 10, 2011

When I had my last puff on March 19, 2010 I couldn't even fathom what 100 days meant! It was like, um, eternity! So I just took it one minute at a time and pledged NOPE ( Not One Puff Ever) for one single day - TODAY! I was amazed at week one - maybe one of the longest weeks of my LIFE! Then, I just kept at it! I discovered this website and I listened to the elders and I READ A LOT! I read the websites that were proferred:

whyquit.com

quitsmokingonline.com

and

The Easy Way! by Allen Carr

I'll admit I was sceptical, especially listening to "The Happy Quitter!" But soon I found myself changing my perspective! I found myself changing my ATTITUDE! I found out that these elders knew what it was like and they were showing me the right track! I kept adding those Smoke FREE Days with NOPE one day at a time and then before I knew it - DAY 100!!!!! TDC! Maybe the BIGGEST DAY of my entire LIFE! I know, you think I'm EXaggerating but I'm not because for me, with COPD, it's a matter of LIFE or BREATH! The next 100 went so much faster!!! And it got even BETTER! Then another 100 and another, more than a YEAR and I was overwhelmed with GRATITUDE to my Father in Heaven for my QUIT and for this site that showed me how it CAN be done! Now at 600, my goal is to let YOU know just WHAT is the ENEMY!!!! Not the nico-demon - that's just your addictive self! Why hate yourself - any part of you? NO! The ENEMY is NICOTINE! And by golly, YOU are so much more powerful than a dead leaf wrapped in paper and dipped in thousands of deadly chemicals!!!! Just KNOW that YOU ARE WORTH IT and LIVE ABUNDANTLY - Smoke FREE!!! Before YOU know it you will be Celebrating 600 Smoke FREE Days!!!!

Thomas3.20.2010

NOVEMBER!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 7, 2011

Lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are two of the deadliest diseases in the country, yet they remain largely unnoticed.  Throughout November—Lung Cancer Awareness Month and COPD Awareness Month—the American Lung Association is spotlighting these overlooked lung diseases to increase public understanding and encourage action to help prevent and treat them.

“Lung cancer and COPD are two of the most life-changing and life-threatening diseases in the country,” said Norman H. Edelman, M.D., chief medical officer of the American Lung Association.  “There is no better time than now to learn about these diseases and support patients and loved ones who are affected by them.”

As part of the Lung Associations’ commitment to lung health, COPD and lung cancer are featured on its website throughout the year to raise awareness and provide lung health resources.  The Lung Association has also partnered with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) and others on NHLBI’sCOPD Learn More Breathe Better® campaign to educate the public about the early symptoms and signs of COPD.

Lung cancer is the leading cancer killer in the country, while COPD—which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis—is the third leading cause of death in the U.S.

Approximately 373,500 Americans are living with lung cancer.  In 2011, more than 221,000 new cases were diagnosed and about 157,000 Americans were expected to die from lung cancer.

The leading cause of lung cancer is the inhalation of cigarette smoke—firsthandand secondhand.  Other causes include radon exposure and industrial exposures to hazardous materials like asbestos and arsenic; even some genetic factors pose a lung cancer risk.

 

Lung cancer is responsible for nearly 30 percent of all cancer deaths in America—more than any other cancer,” said Dr. Edelman.  “That startling reality must change.  No one deserves to bear the burden of lung cancer.  We need all Americans to understand the severity of lung cancer and do what they can to help prevent it and support the fight for a cure.”

COPD is a lung disease characterized by an obstruction to airflow that interferes with normal breathing and over time makes it very difficult to breathe.  While more than 12 million Americans are known to have COPD, up to 24 million may have the disease because it often goes undiagnosed. COPD is not curable; however it is preventable, and can be treated and managed on a daily basis.  People at risk of COPD, especially current and former smokers with COPD symptoms, should consult their physicians about a spirometry test in order to diagnose the disease as early as possible and begin treatment.

As with lung cancer, the primary cause of COPD is the inhalation of cigarette smoke.  Other causes include exposure to occupational dust particles and chemicals, as well as a rare genetic mutation called Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency.

“COPD can be treated and managed effectively, particularly when the disease is diagnosed early,” said Dr. Edelman.  “Treatments and comprehensive care can decrease COPD symptoms, reduce hospitalizations and enhance overall quality of life.  Patients should confer with their physicians for ways to reduce symptoms and diminish further serious damage to their lungs.”

The American Lung Association funds research that focuses on preventing lung cancer, increasing the survival rate and reducing its effects on patients’ quality of life.

he Lung Association is calling for increased NIH research funding to address lung cancer at the National Cancer Institute and COPD at the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute.  The Lung Association encourages Americans to contact their respective senators and representative and urge them to support this effort.

If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did
not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome. Charlotte Bronte

 

Did you ever notice how when you buy a different "new to you" car, all of a sudden you see that same type, even color car everywhere you go? You could say I'm having a similar experience with COPD. It seems like everywhere I go I run into people who have the illness whereas before I just didn't notice them! I don't know, maybe it's an adjustment to accepting the fact that I have a chronic, progressive, incurable illness. I went through the denial, the bargaining, the anger, and most recently the depression. I must now be stepping into the final hardest stage - acceptance! This last week was the culmination of my depression as I attended, yes, seven funerals! My goodness, I used to go a whole year without ever attending a funeral! It's time to LIVE with abundance and JOY of the gift of LIFE! It's time to let the Easter of my Soul blssom and trust in the Lord to have my best interests at heart! It's time to go beyond survive - to actually thrive with the crispness of the reality that right now, today I am alive - to embrace that reality with GRATITUDE and ENTHUSIASM! The fallacy of depression is it wastes what time and energy we have been granted! I'm not saying that to bash myself but to move on to a better place! 

 

Folks, if you have a sickerette in your hand at this moment and you wonder if that one smoke will be half as marvelous as you imagine - look long and hard at it! The very cigarette in your hand could very well be your killerette and you'll never know it! Do you REALLY want to smoke it? 

Candy is a great substitute for cravings! So....

 

 

HAPPY CANDY DAY, EVERYBODY!!! LOL!

Thomas3.20.2010

Change!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 3, 2011

Isn't it ironic that the whole quit journey is about change  - change your habits, change your lifestyle, change your attitude, change your perspective and yet we find this website change frustrating? We should be EXperts at change by now, wouldn't you think? It's different, sure, but it's not so bad - certainly not worth sacrificing the Fantastic Community we have here! Hang in there! Pretty soon it will be old hat!

 On behalf of the 24 million Americans living with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), the third leading cause of death in the U.S. and a disease that kills one person every four minutes, the COPD Foundation is leading the call for increased research initiatives, enhanced screening and diagnosis, improved treatment and therapies, and heightened public awareness during November, COPD Awareness Month and November 16, 2011, World COPD Day.

"For those who remain undiagnosed, this month-long campaign holds particular importance since widespread recognition of COPD's symptoms will enable early detection and help to improve the efficacy of treatment and pulmonary rehabilitation," says John W. Walsh, President and Co-Founder of the COPD Foundation. "Our goal is to facilitate more screenings and improved levels of diagnosis, drive the development of effective therapies, as well as to inform, empower and engage patients."

COPD encompasses a group of lung diseases, including emphysema, chronic bronchitis, refractory asthma and bronchiectasis. The most common symptoms are breathlessness (or a "need for air"), abnormal sputum (a mix of saliva and mucus in the airway), and a chronic cough. Daily activities, such as walking up a short flight of stairs or taking a shower, can become very difficult as the condition gradually worsens. The primary cause of COPD is tobacco smoke (including second-hand or passive exposure).

During a Congressional Briefing in early October, the U.S. COPD Coalition announced their resolution to "Go Orange", declaring orange the official color of COPD Awareness. "Air quality is of great concern to those with chronic respiratory problems, and the color orange is used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Air Quality Index to represent days with unhealthy air quality for sensitive groups, including people with lung disease," Walsh adds.

Thomas3.20.2010

Know Your Enemy!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Nov 1, 2011

the 2010 surgeon general’s report How Tobacco Smoke Causes Diseases: The Biology and Behavioral Basis for Smoking Attributable Disease substantiated the previous evidence that there is no safe level of exposure to tobacco smoke.

The 2010 surgeon general’s report describes in detail the ways tobacco smoke damages every organ in the body and causes disease and death. When individuals inhale tobacco smoke, either directly or secondhand, they are inhaling more than 7,000 chemicals. Hundreds are hazardous, and at least 69 are known to cause cancer. The chemicals are rapidly adsorbed by cells in the body and produce disease-causing cellular changes.

 

ONE CIGARETTE is too much!

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